Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne to Get Royalties from Sam Smith

Guitarhack

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So I guess there was a settlement agreement reached regarding Sam Smith's "Stay With Me" song.

Sharp-eared listeners have been pointing out the melodic similarities between Sam Smith’s breakout solo hit “Stay With Me” and Tom Petty’s 1989 hit “I Won’t Back Down” since the former dropped last spring. Apparently one of them was Petty himselfU.K. paper The Sun reports that the classic rocker and Smith settled a lawsuit out of court last fall that gives Petty and his “I Won’t Back Down” songwriting partner, ELO frontman Jeff Lynne, 12.5 percent of the royalties from “Stay With Me.”

A rep for Smith says, “Recently the publishers for the song ‘I Won’t Back Down,’ written by Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne, contacted the publishers for ‘Stay With Me,’ written by Sam Smith, James Napier and William Phillips, about similarities heard in the melodies of the choruses of the two compositions. Not previously familiar with the 1989 Petty/Lynne song, the writers of ‘Stay With Me’ listened to ‘I Won’t Back Down’ and acknowledged the similarity. Although the likeness was a complete coincidence, all involved came to an immediate and amicable agreement in which Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne are now credited as co-writers of ‘Stay With Me’ along with Sam Smith, James Napier and William Phillips.”

As Consequence of Sound points out, Petty and Lynne have already been given songwriting credit through the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers. “Stay With Me” has sold more than 4 million copies to date.


Here's the music

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4YMh8orMNqc[/ame]

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-rC8RRXcfeo[/ame]

This guy sped up Smith's song and slowed down Petty's.

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkcZV97O3pw[/ame]

I can hear the similarities and at first they didn't seem that great to me, but after listening to it a bit I see it.

What do you guys think?
 

CodeMonk

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Some similarities, yeah. if you work at it.
Similar vocal melodies here and there.
Same number of syllables in some spots.


But overall?

I think its utter bullshit.
 

decoy205

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I think its utter bullshit.

This.

As a Tom Petty fan, someone who has worked in music publishing for 15 years and someone who is a musician and supports copyright protection I'm kind of angered by this. There are only so many notes one can use in so many ways. The chord progression for one part of the song is similar but big deal. The songs feel, emotion and genre is completely different.

The fact that you can't hear it unless someone speeds up the Sam smith tune shows to me that they are different enough. I haz a dissappoint with Tom Petty on this one.
 

SixAngryStrings

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college_humor_hand_vag_flv.jpg
 

Eball92

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Tom petty has always come across as a total jerk to me, so its really not that surprising.

That being said, both songs suck. But seriously now. Theres only so many chords/notes and progressions, be reasonable
 

Guitarhack

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This.

As a Tom Petty fan, someone who has worked in music publishing for 15 years and someone who is a musician and supports copyright protection I'm kind of angered by this. There are only so many notes one can use in so many ways. The chord progression for one part of the song is similar but big deal. The songs feel, emotion and genre is completely different.

The fact that you can't hear it unless someone speeds up the Sam smith tune shows to me that they are different enough. I haz a dissappoint with Tom Petty on this one.

I completely agree with you. I'm a big fan of Petty and Lynne's but I think you're right. The chord progression is the same but the feel and genre are completely different.
 

Drew224

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I don't even think Sam Smith is a good singer, let alone in possession of any songwriting talent. Just another corporate shill.

EDIT: Believe it or not, guys, there are still people who can write original music that doesn't sound absolutely derivative. The whole "nothing new under the sun" argument only goes so far. You would have to not listen to any music at all for 26 years to never have heard "I Won't Back Down." When I'm writing, I can still stand back and see if there is any similarity between what I have done, and the music I am familiar with.
 

NRBQ

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The world can be cruel to shiny things...
 

LPSGME

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Different songs imho.
Otherwise, I always felt someone's vocal persona was heavily borrowed from Dylan.
 

nick1962

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I don't even think Sam Smith is a good singer, let alone in possession of any songwriting talent. Just another corporate shill.

EDIT: Believe it or not, guys, there are still people who can write original music that doesn't sound absolutely derivative. The whole "nothing new under the sun" argument only goes so far. You would have to not listen to any music at all for 26 years to never have heard "I Won't Back Down." When I'm writing, I can still stand back and see if there is any similarity between what I have done, and the music I am familiar with.

The key words in your statement are "the music I am familiar with" ....what about the thousands of songs you aren't familiar with?
 

Drew224

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Well, see, that is just another part of the point I was making there. Smith's song is similar to something that pretty much everyone in the western world over the age of 20 has heard before. Pop music is easily identifiable by the average American, and anyone who creates something that is "accidentally similar" is either lazy or lying. Probably both.

And no, he is not allowed to use the English card.
 

markbastable

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I think that's a stretch, personally - and I'm a big fan of Petty.


Then again, I thought that Chuck Berry complaining about Come Together was a stretch too.
 

So What

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I'm surprised by the negative comments about Petty and Lynne protecting their song.

I agree that it is a simple chord progression that is bound to be used many times over.

But there are quite a few similarities beyond simple chord progression.

Ask yourselves, "What if it was MY song that sounded like it had been copied?"

What would you do?

:hmm:


.
 

decoy205

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The melody is almost note for note the same, the first time I heard that song I told my buddy it was a Petty rip, glad to see I'm not crazy

A song is about context. Those 3 notes in that order to not make a song. I also do not like the Sam Smith tune but I love the Tom Petty tune. If the Sam Smith tune wasn't a hit no one would give a sh*t. $$$$$$$ :thumb:
 

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